As a football fan you know that Easter is a busy time for clubs, with most having to play two games in three days. However, it's only when you write a blog like this that you discover just how much action is being crammed into every corner of the capital in such a short space of time.
Between 6-9 April, London will be putting on its own football festival with a whopping 80 matches taking place, many of which will be local derbies. And that's not to mention the other 19 games that will take place between the 2-5 April giving us a grand total of 99 games over the next eight days.
The Easter weekend is also often a crucial time which can go a long way to making or breaking a team's season. When I recall Easters past, the one that sticks out for me is always 1993. As someone who identifies his favourite two clubs as QPR and Harrow Borough those were a glorious few days.
For sides who tended to struggle or be decidedly average, 1992-93 was a season to savour for both. Les Ferdinand was at the peak of his powers for Rangers and hit back-to-back hat-tricks that weekend as Nottingham Forest and Everton were beaten 4-3 and 5-3 respectively. Harrow meanwhile spent a sunny Monday afternoon at Enfield's old Southbury Road ground pipping local rivals Wembley 1-0 in the 100th staging of the Middlesex Senior Cup final.
That trip to north London with friends in a cramped Fiesta roaring around the North Circular has to be one of my favourite memories from my teenage years. So what about you? Which Easter weekend stands out and why?
If you're coming to London over the next few weeks, here's what international and Premier League tickets are on general sale (click on the team name for more info):
2 June - Belgium 515pm, Wembley Stadium, international friendly
16 April - Wigan Athletic 8pm, Premier League
2 May - Newcastle United 745pm, Premier League
21 April - Wigan Athletic 3pm, Premier League
11 April - Swansea City 8pm, Premier League
9 April - Norwich City 3pm, Premier League
29 April - Blackburn Rovers 4pm, Premier League
As previously mentioned, there are 99 matches in the London area over the next eight days. Alongside all the league matches there are also a couple of minor cup finals which are always worth a go. Here are this week's match maps:
Yellow pin - Monday fixtures
Green pin - Tuesday fixtures
Turquoise pin - Wednesday fixtures
View London midweek match map 2-5 April 2012 in a larger map
EASTER WEEKEND MAP
Magenta pin - Good Friday fixtures
Blue pin - Easter Saturday fixtures
Red pin - Easter Sunday fixtures
Yellow pin - Easter Monday fixtures
View London Easter weekend match map 6-9 April 2012 in a larger map
Please let me know if there are any errors or omissions and always make sure you check with a club on the day whether a match is still taking place.
It was incredibly tough coming up with a TLFG Top 10 this week but after a lot of effort I managed to narrow it down. Sadly on going to give the piece a final once-over, I discovered that Blogger had suffered a funny turn and wiped most of what I'd written so I'll leave you to post your own recommendations in the comments section below because I can't be bothered doing it all again!
UPDATE MONDAY 02/04/12
Having slept on it, I thought I couldn't let such a big week go by without putting some recommendations up. For the groundhoppers among you there are also some 'doubles' available. Instead of giving you a full explanation of why games are so important, I'll list them chronologically with brief reasons (league positions correct at time of writing):
TUESDAY 3 APRIL
BARNET v SWINDON TOWN, 745pm
(League Two relegation v promotion battle)
WEDNESDAY 4 APRIL
CHELSEA v BENFICA, 745pm
(Champions League quarter-final second leg, 1-0 agg.)
FRIDAY 6 APRIL
PHOENIX SPORTS v BLY SPARTANS, 2pm
(Kent Invicta League Cup final at Welling United)
SUNDAY 8 APRIL
ARSENAL v MANCHESTER CITY, 4pm
(3rd v 2nd in Premier League)
MONDAY 9 APRIL
RAYNES PARK VALE v COLLIERS WOOD UNITED, 1130am
('SW20' derby - Colliers Wood fighting relegation in Combined Counties)
AFC HORNCHURCH v BILLERICAY TOWN, 3pm
(2nd v 1st in Ryman Premier & Essex derby)
CARSHALTON ATHLETIC v TOOTING & MITCHAM UTD, 3pm
(Local derby which could see Tooting relegated from Ryman Premier)
WEST HAM UNITED v BIRMINGHAM CITY, 520pm
(3rd v 4th in the Championship)
HAMPTON & RICHMOND BOROUGH v WEALDSTONE, 745pm
(Middlesex Senior Cup final at Uxbridge FC)
FULHAM v CHELSEA, 8pm
(West London derby)
Well there you have it, those are my recommendations. Strangely I haven't selected anything on the Saturday when there are loads of games, it just seems the more important ones are on Monday. Enjoy your football watching.